Ye Olde

Trombonist/Composer/Arranger JACOB GARCHIK Releases Fourth Album, Ye Olde Featuring Veritable Supergroup of Brooklyn Avant Guitarists, Mary Halvorson, Brandon Seabrook, and Jonathan Goldberger, Plus Drummer Vinnie Sperrazza.

Album Release Party 10/27/15 at Bowery Electric
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1 Ye Olde of Flatbush

ye olde cover

1 Ye Olde of Flatbush

2 The Sinister Scheme of Mortise Mansard
3 A Clue Wrought in Stone
4 The Lady of Duck Island
5 and Meanwhile
6 The Elders of Ocean Pathway
7 Stained Glass Transoms Illuminate a Hidden Crypt
8 The Opossum King of Greenwood Forest
9 Crenulated Corbels
10 Post-Modern Revival
11 while Meanwhile
12 The Battle of Brownstone Bulge
13 Refuge in the Ruins of Castle Martense
14 The Throne Room of Queen Anne

The epic tale of which I tell below
Takes place In Flatbush, 1000 years ago.
Our heroes met and formed a merry band
in order to defeat the evil plan
of architect Mortise Mansard the IVth
whose castles dotted the landscape South to North.
Upon a springtime walk around the town,
the Barrel Maker gazed upon the brown
and limestone ornaments he’d seen before
but never stopped to wonder what they’re for.
The architects of old hid secret meanings
in stonework, visible only by gleaning.
Acanthus, suits of armor, family crests,
led to the start of what became a quest.
Read together lurked a message hiding:
Mansard’s recipe for vinyl siding.
Flatbush would be a town of brick no more
But a sea of yellow vinyl from roof to floor.
To fell a foe with such a sinister scheme
The Barrel Maker had to build a team.
The Stream, The Rock, The Iron and The Gold
Together make the band which is YE OLDE.

Jacob Garchik – the Barrel Maker – trombone, alto horn, tenor horn
Brandon Seabrook – the Trickling Stream – guitar
Mary Halvorson – the Guardian of the Rock – guitar
Vinnie Sperrazza – the Merchant of Iron – drums
Jonathan Goldberger- the Mountain of Gold – guitar, baritone guitar
Photo by Peter Gannushkin

all music composed by Jacob Garchik in the year 1014 in the village of Flatbush in the town of Brooklyn
recorded and mixed by Jon Davis, The Bunker Studios, spring 2014
Mastered by Scott Hull
Design by Valerie Trucchia
Photos by Jacob Garchik
copyright 2015 Hogoe Publishing (ASCAP)
Yestereve records 05

Ye Olde Explores Prog Rock Influences, Faux-Medieval Architecture And Surrealistic Notions of A Brooklyn That Never Was

From trombonist and composer Jacob Garchik comes a fantastical and sublime work of the imagination. Ye Olde is a superband of three of Brooklyn’s baddest guitar heroes, let loose in a funhouse, playing ping pong with our ears: guitarists Mary Halvorson, Brandon Seabrook and Jonathan Goldberger are joined by drummer Vinnie Sperrazza and Garchik on trombone.

Over the past 21 years in New York City, Garchik has created an eclectic career, working with Henry Threadgill, Laurie Anderson, Natalie Merchant, John Hollenbeck, and Lee Konitz; crafting over 50 arrangements as the “in-house” arranger for the Kronos Quartet; leading his award-winning jazz trio; creating his acclaimed solo project The Heavens: The Atheist Gospel Trombone Album; and co-leading Brooklyn’s first Mexican brass band, Banda de los Muertos.

Ye Olde, his fourth CD, draws from such varied influences as prog rock concept albums, Richard Strauss’s tone poems, and 90s game consoles. Garchik envisions Ye Olde as a “band” of heroes, traversing a Brooklyn that never was, taking part in surreal adventures amidst a landscape of ruined castles/apartment buildings. To help his quest he brings along Mary Halvorson (Anthony Braxton, Marc Ribot’s Sun Ship), Brandon Seabrook (Gerald Cleaver’s Black Host, Ben Allison), Jonathan Goldberger (Red Baraat, Bizingas), Vinnie Sperrazza (James Williams, Stew) and a pile of analog electronics.

Like many who became jazz musicians in the post-rock era, Garchik is no stranger to fetishizing the past. As part of a deepening obsession with Brooklyn architecture, he began to notice faux Medieval imagery, gargoyles, knights carved in stone, castle-like rooflines, half timbering, a 1930s fantasy of quaintness, buildings covered with elaborate heraldic shields that were marketed to upwardly mobile Lower-East-Side immigrants. Architectural style guides are a long list of “Revivals,” “Neos” and “Mocks.” There are strange parallels between hipsters pining for apartments in depression-era buildings with names like Nottingham Court or The Tudor Stewart; the blockbuster movie soundtracks of our youth, themselves tributes to 1930s film composers, who created the sound of swashbuckling out of a pastiche of Wagnerian cliches from operas about ancient European legends. The current craze for swords and CGI dragons owes a debt to Tolkien’s 30s sagas based on olde English folklore.

Laid atop photos of stonework from Flatbush-area apartment buildings, the liner notes include an expository poem. As flimsy as a Golan-Globus movie, the “plot” of Ye Olde draws from the cliches of Generation X’s past, featuring a cast of misfits, cryptic architectural stonework, an illuminating ray of light in a map room, and a closing precession in a throne room. Set in a magical medieval Flatbush, the heroes have to enlist the help of a benevolent opossum, a lady of the lake, and the wisdom of the elders to keep an evil architect from covering everything with vinyl siding.

Ye Olde, then, is the perfect soundtrack to a non-existent movie, a prismatic view of the layers of faux nostalgia that surround us. From the bombastic opener “Ye Olde of Flatbush” to the Hendrix-meets-Balkan “The Sinister Scheme of Mortise Mansard” to Goldberger’s noise rock solo on “Post-Modern Revival,” there is a lot of fun had here. “The Elders of Ocean Pathway” references Mingus and Tony Williams Lifetime for a pseudo-blues that lets Seabrook rip. Halvorson lends her distinctive clean plucked sound to “The Battle of Brownstone Bulge.” “Refuge in the Ruins of Castle Martense” is a Kraftwerk-like episode for four alto horns, two tenor horns (all overdubbed by Garchik), two guitars, baritone guitar, and flanger-processed drums. In between all of these, Garchik has created his own “wipes”: transitional miniatures which separate larger pieces.

Like siding hiding an original facade, Ye Olde is a many-layered album drawing from the absurd, imagined history, and superior musicianship, referencing a past that never existed but looking towards a future that enchants.
For more information on Jacob Garchik, please contact Stephen Buono at // 267-241-5316 or Matt Merewitz at // 347-384-2839.